Where you land as a rookie has a dramatic impact on your career. This is your first contact with the life of an NBA professional, you have two years to prove yourself or get labeled as a bust. Considering that, the fact Trevor Booked spent 8 years in the NBA is a miracle.
Booker was drafted by the Washington Wizards in 2010. Here are some of his teammates from his rookie season: Gilbert Arenas, Nick Young, Mike Bibby, Andray Blatche, Jordan Crawford, John Wall – just to mention a few. As Booker explained it, it wasn’t the most professional group in NBA history:
“It was the most terrible team that I’ve probably been on, but it was probably the most fun I’ve ever had in the NBA,” Booker said. “Because those guys didn’t care at all, you know?
I would come into the locker room the day of a game and watch one player cut up the suit of another player. One guy took a s*** in another guy’s shoe. Oh my goodness, I have stories for days. We would go on the road and we would break into each other’s room and beat a player up, tie him up. There’s so many stories I got from those Washington days. It was so much fun, but looking back on it, oh my goodness. It was so unprofessional.”
Now we understand when beat writers can’t get into details but are very confident in saying certain organizations need a lot of change to become serious teams. During Booker’s first two seasons under coach Flip Saunders, they won just 43 total games. His next team was the Jazz, where Boker realized not all teams are like the Wizards.
“But, you know, as soon as I went to Utah, I was like, ‘Wow, this is way different. This is way more professional, and I really like this a lot more. There’s a lot more structure, and you know, it’s family-oriented.’ … I went to other organizations and I realized that what I had in Washington, it was not normal at all.”